Body piercing is a form of expression that has been around before ancient times. Specific body piercings were used by different cultures as traditional elements to show that you belong to their specific community. Today, piercings are not much different in the sense that people choose to partake in a specific look, counter-cultural style, or express themselves freely.
This Guide to body piercing will be exploring the following:

  • Body piercing jewelry
  • Types of ear piercing
  • Facial piercings
  • Oral piercings
  • Body surface piercings

Please use the information in this guide to make an educated decision about what type of body piercing you would like to get. 

Types of Body Piercing

Class is now in session to learn all about the many types of body piercing you can get. Since we do not have the rest of 2020 to write this article, we will not be listing every single place on your body that can be pierced. Instead, we will be listing off some of the most popular places on your body to pierce. Also, please take a look at our gallery for more images of different types of piercings if we do not explain all of them in the following guide.

Types of Ear Piercings

There are many different types of ear piercings, as the ear is the most popular place for people to pierce. Please use this guide and infographic to locate the specific places on the ear to determine which type of ear piercing you would like to get.

Helix Ear Piercing: A helix piercing is any piercing made to the upper cartilage of the ear above the opening to your eardrum.  There are many different types of helix piercings, including Crus of Helix (inner ear above Tragus), and multiple helix piercings. The traditional helix piercing is located on the outside of the ear, in the upper cartilage, but multiple helix piercings are called double or triple helix piercings depending on how many you get. 

Conch Piercing: The conch piercing is located in the middle portion of your ear cartilage, making it the most customizable ear piercing. Its name is derived from the area of the cartilage resemblance of a conch shell. If you get the conch piercing, you need to decide whether you want the inner or outer conch piercing. The inner conch is located in the lower cartilage, which usually has a stud as the jewelry. The outer conch sits in the upper cartilage and usually has a hoop around the ear as the jewelry.

Daith Piercings: A Daith Piercing is done at the small conjoining piece of cartilage right above the Tragus, where the ear curves in from where it attaches to your head and then feeds into where to conch is.

Earlobe Piercings: The most popular place to get an ear (and body piercing). And Earlobe piercing is one or more piercings that go through the earlobe, with the center of the earlobe being the first piercing, followed by either the transverse lobe (closest to the face) or the upper lobe (higher and farther from the face).

Industrial piercing: An Industrial Piercing goes through two separate points of cartilage at the top of your ear, and is usually connected by a barbell or chain piece of jewelry. If your ear is experiencing some issues healing, you may want to replace the barbell or chain with two studs or bead pieces of jewelry while your piercings fully heal. 

Orbital Piercings: An orbital piercing is performed above the upper lobe, usually with a hoop, and filling the space between the outer and inner conch. This piercing can sometimes need two separate piercings depending on the shape of your ear. 

Rook Piercings: This is a piercing of the ear that is located just above the orbital piercing, but doesn’t connect all the way out to the upper earlobe. This small area is usually connected with a small hoop or barbell. It is usually too small for a stud or bead earring. 

Anti helix or Snug Piercings: Also referred to as a  Snug Piercing. This piercing goes through the cartilage along the inner ear loop that is off the face and on its way to the top of the ear.

Tragus Piercings: The tragus piercing is the raised flap of cartilage that connects to your face and is in line with your earhole opening. 

Facial and oral piercings

Eyebrow Piercings: Typically eyebrow piercings are placed at a vertical or diagonal angle on the eyebrow. Eyebrow piercings are more prone to rejection because they are a surface piercing. If the piercing is rejected, we will redo the work once fully healed.

Eyelid Piercings: Eyelid piercings are typically placed at the outside corner of the eyes, but they can also be placed at the very corner of the inner eyes if desired.

Anti-Eyebrow Piercings: The anti-eyebrow piercing is usually situated at an angle and is located below the outer corner of the eye on the upper cheekbone,  rather than on the eyebrow.

Tongue Piercings: tongue piercings are usually done as a stud going through the center of the tongue to the underside. 

Web Piercings: a web piercing is done on the upper inner flap of skin connecting your top lip to your gums. Sometimes referred to as “Smileys”.

Frenulum Piercing: a piercing where the flap of skin below the tongue that connects the tongue to the inside of your mouth is located.

Cheek Piercings: These can be done to create the look of dimples, placed where you would have natural dimples, or put in any area of the cheek that won’t negatively affect the parotid duct. If the parotid duct is damaged, saliva can exit the fistula (i.e. hole where you were pierced) onto the outside of your cheek, which requires a doctor’s visit and cauterization to repair. 

Nose Bridge Piercings – This is a type of surface piercing where the bridge of the nose is pierced on both sides and connected with a barbell all the way through.

Nostril Piercings: nostril piercings are typically done at the corner of the nose and either uses a stud, bean or hoop piece of jewelry.

Septum Piercings: A septum piercing goes through the septum, which is located at the very bottom connection of your nose and face.

Lip Piercings
  • Snake Bites: Snake Bites appear on both sides of the lower lip which resemble snake fangs.
  • Canine Bites/Shark Bites: the combination of Snake Bites plus Angel Bites, makes Canine Bites (or Shark Bites), which are a total of four piercings.
  • Medusa Piercing: A Medusa Piercing is centered between the middle of the upper lip and the bottom of the nose on the philtrum (i.e. the groove between your upper lip and nose)
  • Labret Piercings: Labret Piercings are typically centered below the lower lip, with the jewelry placed horizontally to the ground.
  • Lowbret Piercings: This is a type of Labret Piercing that is located as low as possible on the lower lip area.
  • Cyber Bites: the combination of a Labret Piercing, plus a Medusa Piercing, makes Cyber Bites.
  • Dahlia Piercings/Joker Bites – Dahlia Piercings (or Joker Bites) are done at the corners of the mouth. The name Dahlia piercings came from The Black Dahlia Murder where the victim was cut both corners of her mouth, similar to the Joker in the Batman and Joker films. 
  • Dolphin Bites – Similar to Snake Bites, Dolphin Bites are two piercings that are next to each other, side-by-side centered on the lower lip, with minimum space in between them.
  • Horizontal Lip Piercings – Made famous by Cardi B, this lip piercing is when the bottom lip is pierced from side-to-side under the skin instead of top-to-bottom.
  • Beauty Mark piercing (A.K.A Monroe Piercings/Madonna Piercings/Crawford Piercings) – Monroe/Madonna/Crawford Piercings are placed like these stars’ beauty marks (or upper lip moles).
  • Spider Bites/Viper Bites – Spider Bites (A.K.A. Viper Bites) are done close together at a slight 45-degree angle on one side of the lower lip.
  • Vertical Labret Piercings – A Vertical Labret is when the bottom lip is pierced from bottom-center to top-center, usually decorated with a curved barbell.
Body and Surface Piercing

Surface piercings refer to any piercing that is through the surface skin of the body. These can be done two different ways: the first way involves the use of a “surface anchor” or microdermal, which is basically the use of a small base that is buried under the skin with a single top stud or bead that rests on the surface above These type of piercings are also referred as single-point piercings. The second type of surface piercing uses a surface barbell, which is about the size of a staple with a slight curve and flat center, with two studs or beads resting above the skin. 

picture of body surface piercing

It is very hard to determine which piercing will work best, but the most important factor is placement. Although surface piercings can be done anywhere on the body, this doesn’t mean that it should be done anywhere on the body. Movement and cleanliness are paramount when picking places to do surface piercings because these piercings are usually highly exposed to the elements. We highly recommend staying away from a surface piercing on your arms, legs, hands, and feet because they are next to impossible to keep clean and fully heal. 

If you do get a surface piercing, we recommend you choose a flat area on your body that skin movement is minimum like the forehead, eyebrows, under the eyes, nape of the neck, ears, collarbones, hips, and back dimples. Since everyone’s anatomy is different, we will help you choose a perfect place to support a lasting surface piercing during your free consultation. Surface piercings are known as long-term temporary piercings because they do often eventually work their way out. If your body does reject the surfacing piercing early enough, please contact us to have us replace the piercing.

picture of a girl with piercings in her nose and face

Piercing Safety

Piercing Safety is very important to ensure piercing longevity and prevent infections. Make sure that the piercing shop you choose provides a clean and sterile environment for its clients. A regulated shop in the state of California and the city of San Diego must follow all the rules of the SBAA or State Body Art Act

Here is a checklist that we recommend you ask you shop before choosing one to do your body piercings:

  • Make sure the piercer is a licensed piercer (or practitioner) in the state of California.
  • The body piercer must sterilize his or her hands before each procedure
  • Piercer must wear fresh sterilized disposable gloves (like those worn at a doctor’s office)
  • The piercer should inquire if you have discussed allergies to metals with your doctor prior to your consultation. High-quality jewelry made for the following metals is less likely to cause allergic reactions. We recommend the following:
    • Surgical Steel that is ASTM F138 compliant
    • Alloyed Titanium (Ti6Al4V ELI) that is ASTM F136 compliant
    • Solid 14 karat or higher yellow, white, or rose gold that is nickel and cadmium free.   
  • The body piercer should also have high-quality reviews on Google, Yelp, and Groupon

Piercing Safety is paramount when choosing a shop to handle your procedure. If the body piercing shop does not follow the above mentioned sanitary and sterile conditions and regulations, we highly recommend you do not get a piercing!

Piercing Aftercare Instructions

Before caring for your freshly new body piercing, please make sure to thoroughly your hands. Avoid at all costs touching on or near your piercing for any reason during the healing process. 

Depending upon what kind of piercing you had done, performing a soak with warm saline solution at least two to three times daily will dramatically help the healing process. There are a number of ways you can perform a saline solution soak:

  • The first way this can be done is by heating up a cup of saline solution for 10-15 seconds in the microwave and slowly pouring it over the new body piercing.
  • The second way of doing this is heating up a cup of saline solution and placing the cup tightly around the new piercing and inverting it so the saline solution completely submerges the pierced area. We recommend you hold this for around 3-5 minutes, but the longer the saline has to clean the area the better.
  • The third way of performing a saline solution soak is by using soaked cotton balls.  
  • The last way would be to use a spray bottle filled with saline solution, followed by a water rinse of the surrounding area.

When using soap to clean the area, we recommend only twice a day while showering. Apply a small amount of soap to the fresh piercing and the attached jewelry clean for 30 seconds. Make sure to rinse the area thoroughly to completely remove all access soap.

When drying the new piercing, we recommend using disposable tissues so the jewelry does not get caught on other surfaces, and avoid towels at all costs because they are full of bacteria.

Be aware that there might be some bleeding, initial redness, swelling, itchiness, tenderness, bruising secretion of fluid that may crust over the metal around the new piercing. Don’t be alarmed… this is all normal and part of the healing process!

A very important point: Piercings may seem healed before they have fully finished the healing process. This is because the surface of the piercing may have healed, but your internal tissue is still on the mend. Give it the full time to heal properly to ensure the longevity of your piercing!

Make sure to call Funhouse Tattoo and Piercing to book your appointment with our highly skilled and veteran piercer Steve. Click here to book a free consultation!